Tag Archives: cancer

If I Cry… Just Lend a Shoulder & Some Tissue

“Oft hope is born when all is forlorn.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, “The Return of the King” 

Well, it has been a while since I have written. Congested into the past six months has been a turbulence and turmoil I had not quite anticipated. Had there been a glimmer of the mayhem to come, I might have been better suited to deal with the pandemonium. Alas, I never caught a glimpse of it. Thus, the delay in writing.  My most humble apologies. 

Toward the end of December I spoke of the pending move. Yoda was transferred to the Metroplex and so it began. I could go into all the gory details, but seriously, there isn’t enough time and carpal tunnel would kick in long before I’m done. But here’s the gist: 

We sold the house, which wasn’t even on the market, in about a month open to close. The buyer’s lender insisted the close date be moved up two weeks. Because of the freakin’ weather, we were having the outside painted and the little house reroofed almost simultaneously. The paint wasn’t even dry on the final inspection. And that doesn’t even include the other little repairs that were made during that time. 

What Yoda didn’t bring to DFW was thrown into storage during the sale of the house. The remainder of the items was thrown in literally at 8:51pm the day before we closed on the house. The storage unit locked down at 9:00pm. I have a feeling I’ll never figure out all the things that were thrown out, given to charity or are tossed in boxes here and there. (And as a side note – paying rent on storage just irks me. I want a house again. Obviously I’m feeling a bit materialistic. Maybe I need to get over that.) 

So the kids moved into an apartment – the lease was signed a few days before closing on the house. Begging, borrowing and stealing came to mind when it came to the pet deposits as two of the dogs are there and one is in the Metro.  Seriously… why are pet deposits so blooming high? 

Meanwhile my sister-in-law/sister of my heart entered the hospital over 350 miles from her home because she had to undergo a more rigid cancer treatment – diagnosed in November with leukemia.  My mom-in-law for the most part moved with her to Dallas and moved into her hospital room and helped her so much as my SIL was so weak and miserable. I mean nursing staff can only do so much, eh? This started mid-March. 

Birthdays and holidays came and went and I still hadn’t heard back from the job I applied for.  You heard that right. I applied for one. It’s a specialized field and the hiring process is incredibly long. So long that I didn’t go down for an interview etc for a while. However, after all this, that and the other they must have thought I could do the job because I started the second week in June. Normally, this is cause to celebrate; however, I LOVED my old job. I had planned to retire from it. This obviously didn’t happen. So while I’m mourning my old job, I move down on Sunday and start work three days later Wednesday 6-11-14. 

Obviously God had his reasons for the timing of the madness.

My Yoda, dearest Yoda… He was a half-match for a bone marrow transplant. In the entire registry, he and his brother were the only ones. The transplant took place just days before he helped me move.  The process made him feel “blah” to say the least. But he has the biggest heart and I’m richly blessed. 

But my SIL didn’t improve much after the transplant. Apparently you have to bide your time and wait for the cells to kick in. Meanwhile, my MIL still stayed with her and cared for her. She only left the hospital for maybe a total of 2-3 weeks between mid March and June. Wow. She’s such an amazing woman. 

Saturday the 14th we went to see her in the hospital after going to church. Darling SIL didn’t look so hot. I mean, sporting a hospital gown theoretically could be a sexy look. On cancer patients, not so much. However, her bald head was beautiful and her smile still so sweet. But you could tell something wasn’t quite right. She was rather “out of it” and slept most of the time we were there. 

The long story short is the excrement hit the proverbial fan. I don’t remember how many calls and text messages flew back and forth over the next week, but too many to count. There were prayers lifted for my SIL all around the world. But she lost her fight to that ugly disease called cancer on Monday, June 23rd. Now the texts and calls fly because of funeral arrangements and all I can think about is that I just want to pick up the phone and hear her voice. I want to get her advice on some things and I can’t do that. I feel bloody selfish. I feel bloody miserable.  

Tomorrow I leave for “home” again – a quick trip. My new supervisor allowed me the day off if I work next Friday (which I was supposed to have off), but I’m not allowed to use vacation days, sick leave etc for the first six months of employment. And a SIL doesn’t apparently qualify for any kind of bereavement leave. I don’t know that I understand, but there’s no arguing the point.

I feel like a stranger in a strange land. I am in a pretty dark place right now and I have a feeling it’s going to be a bit before I’m feeling “normal” again – whatever that is.  I believe I will feel better after my SIL is laid to rest and we all gather to celebrate her life.  For now, all I can do is rely on my Heavenly Father and his Son, Jesus Christ, to carry me when I’m weak and lift my heart from the darkness to the light. 

May this letter from my new home find you in a better place than I am emotionally at this time. Always…. C

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Rockin’ the Veggies!

“Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.” – Albert Einstein –

My youngest daughter is seventeen – you might remember seventeen, the age at which all things are possible.  She’s working out what she wants to do in the future and figuring out who she is. She’s really quite amazing and watching her go through this process is quite eye opening and I wonder if my parents took the amount of time I spend studying her studying me.

One of the things she has done is decided “enough is enough” and started improving her diet and getting in shape.  She is working out and has gone vegan, eating no meat / animal products and is working really hard to go raw vegan. 

As a result of her dietary changes, I have had to learn a lot about veganism and vegetarianism and other isms I didn’t know a thing about .  So before I go further, lemme give you the short version.

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Ovo-vegetarianism includes eggs but not dairy products and  Lacto-vegetarianism includes dairy products but not eggs.

Ovo-lacto vegetarianism (or lacto-ovo vegetarianism) includes animal/dairy products such as eggs, milk, and honey. (This is the most common type of vegetarianism in the USA.)

Veganism excludes all animal flesh and animal products, including milk, honey, and eggs.

Raw veganism includes only fresh and uncooked fruit, nuts, seeds, and vegetables. Vegetables can only be cooked up to a certain temperature.

Fruitarianism permits only fruit, nuts, seeds, and other plant matter that can be gathered without harming the plant.

Sattvic diet (also known as yogic diet), a plant based diet which may also include dairy (not eggs) and honey, but excludes anything from the onion or leek family, red lentils, durian fruit, mushrooms, blue cheeses, fermented foods or sauces, alcoholic drinks and often also excludes coffee, black or green tea, chocolate, nutmeg or any other type of stimulant such as excess sharp spices.

Buddhist vegetarianism (also known as su vegetarianism) excludes all animal products as well as vegetables in the allium family (which have the characteristic aroma of onion and garlic): onion, garlic, scallions, leeks, chives, or shallots.

Jain vegetarianism includes dairy but excludes eggs and honey, as well as root vegetables.

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Wow…  that’s a lot to learn, but even more to practice. Like I said, she’s vegan and going raw vegan, but not completely there yet.  Like I said, I’m proud of her. Through the working out and eating right, she’s lost a bunch of weight and is gettting in shape. Her goal is to eventually run a marathon. I can’t say I’ll ever run a marathon, and honestly, I don’t want to. But I do want to run in the Susan G. Komen 5K next year. She’s just one of the inspirations I have for doing so.

My mother had breast cancer and has been cancer free for more than five years now. It had spread to her lymph nodes and she had to have some of those removed.  Fortunately, it hadn’t gotten bad enough that she would have had to have a mastectomy. She and several other people I know are other inspirations to make the run. I have to do my fair share of getting back into shape, but there’s no reason why I can’t … except for excuses. Lots of excuses.

As I look further into vegetarianism and getting back into shape myself, I may decide to modify my diet.  I don’t think I’ll ever go vegan. I have to face it – I’m a Texan and I love a good steak. However, I believe I can morph more that direction and definitely eat more of a natural / vegetarian lifestyle and less of a processed foods lifestyle and make it work.

More on that as I make the change for the better… and again… I just have to say – I’m really, really proud of youngest. Rock on, girlie!!!